Why were we put here to do what we want, if we end up being too afraid to do it? In DON’T BE AFRAID OF HEAVEN, 13-year old Miguel Estes feels that being “scared to death,” and having “the life scared out of me,” are no longer just tired, old expressions, they’ve become part of a world-wide epidemic. Now rid of the fears that once paralyzed him, Miguel decides to help others eliminate theirs; he founds F.A.A.T. (Fear Ain’t All That), an after-school group with his eccentric but wise Aunt Shirley.
In its first meeting Miguel befriends Samantha, a girl diagnosed as having an exotic variety of phobias, fears, and anxieties. With a fierce determination, Miguel helps Samantha rid her life of one debilitating fear after another. Together, Miguel and Samantha learn much about life, fear, and death. Revelations from Aunt Shirley, and recurrent dreams of his brother Jorge (who already lives in heaven), also remind Miguel that “heaven is a far better place than here. It’s nothing to be afraid of; it’s the perfect place to be. Everything about it is perfect.”
After undergoing a radical transformation, a stronger-than-ever-before Samantha, grows to be ill. As her condition worsens, Aunt Shirley informs Miguel that the greatest lesson he can possibly share with his dear friend is to help her be unafraid of going to heaven. Of course he’s uncertain about accepting this task. But, paradoxically, it ends up being Samantha who teaches Miguel. Prior to leaving, Samantha feels only joy, excitement, and relief about her upcoming journey; Miguel, due to Samantha’s experience, becomes unafraid of his own mortality. Samantha, now completely fearless, moves on; although left behind, Miguel celebrates Samantha’s life as well as her death.
DON’T BE AFRAID OF HEAVEN is the sequel to FEAR AIN’T ALL THAT, two multicultural fear-eliminating novels for teens.
AUTHOR INFO: Born in Oakland, California, Clint Adams, now lives in Viareggio, Italy. Having authored numerous academic publications while at the Washington Post and McGraw-Hill, Clint now actively markets his two fear-eliminating novels for teens, FEAR AIN’T ALL THAT and its sequel, DON’T BE AFRAID OF HEAVEN. Before writing, Clint was a professional actor with over 100 credits in TV, film, and theatre. Clint earned a bachelor’s degree in drama from the University of California at Berkeley, and his master’s in marketing from San Francisco’s Golden Gate University.